December 10th, 2008
12:59 PM ET
5 years ago

Obama calls on Blagojevich to resign

Obama is now calling on Blagojevich to step down.
Obama is now calling on Blagojevich to step down.

(CNN) – President-elect Barack Obama Wednesday joined calls for Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich to resign.

"The president-elect agrees with [Illinois] Lt. Governor Quinn and many others that under the current circumstances it is difficult for the governor to effectively do his job and serve the people of Illinois," Obama spokesman Robert Gibbs said.

On Tuesday Blagojevich was arrested on federal conspiracy charges. Prosecutors alleged in their complaint that Blagojevich pressured candidates to replace Obama in the Senate for campaign contributions and other benefits.

Gibbs said Obama also supported legislation that will be considered by Illinois lawmakers on Monday to authorize a special election to choose his successor.

Obama believes Illinois lawmakers should "put in place a process to select a new senator that will have the trust and confidence of the the people of Illinois," Gibbs said.

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soundoff (551 Responses)
  1. an american first

    I agree with you Nathan. People get so caught up in these so called scandals that they forget why we elected him in the first place. Just yesterday a poll was out that stated that about 79% of Americans felt that Pres. Elect Obama is doing a good job with his transition process. But now suddenly, we are focusing on how he was related to this crazy governor. Let him do his job otherwise we will all get tangled up in the "Same Old Politics" nonsense.

    To say all these negative stuff about Pres. Elect Obama as a result of his State governor being indicted is simply ridiculous and distracting us from the real change he is already starting to make. I am not saying we should blindly trust him, but come on folks, this is not his story. This is the governor's story. Leave it at that... He is the ultimate victim here because if the governor was not crazy enough to do what he did, then Pres. Elect will still be able to focus on who he is going to pick as the Education and labor secretary and others and define policies that fundamentally is going to change this country into a better one.

    December 10, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  2. totally neutral

    So, we can add due process, the right to face your accusers, and innocent until proven guilty to our ever lengthening list of civil rights that shall never return.
    So far, what has come out of the U.S. Attorneys office (the morning after he recommended all state agencies refuse to do business with the Bank of America) are just sentences that could be put into any context. I've been telling my wife for years 'I've got something really big and boy is it (expletive deleted) golden' for years, but she's seen it – so thats different.
    Recusing himself from the appointment of a new senator would be the ethical thing to do, but to ask, force or coerce him into doing anything that might implicate his guilt before a fair trial is UN-AMERICAN.
    Shame on the lot of you.

    December 10, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  3. sick of right wing crazies

    hey Bhupendra, English isn't your first language is it? I hope that's the case, because if it isn't, your VAST ignorance is showing. And Ed Stack, if you KNOW something, just spit it out. Enough with the veiled innuendo that has absolutely no basis in fact.

    December 10, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  4. Jennifer NY

    I agree. This guy was caught on tape...he can't deny it. He must resign and take his sleazy aide with him. They should be barred from doing any of the state's business until this issue is resolved one way or the other.

    December 10, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  5. karen-phoenix

    I grew up in the burbs of Chicago and now live in AZ. NO DIFFERENCE!! Several govs in AZ have gone to jail. Its a persons character that truely matters–not the state!!! Read "Audacity of Hope" by Obama and you will see his character–its pretty pure!!! AND I've been a republican for 40 years and completely disgusted with the rep party and what has happened. Obama had NOTHING to do with RB–even Fitzpatrick said so and Blogo hatted Obama for his honesty and uprightness!!!

    December 10, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  6. gee

    Chicago politics, how do think BO won all those caucases, bus loads of crooks flooded the primaries and nobody noticed. Tip of an icebag.

    December 10, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  7. M. Taylor

    From now until eternity, Mr. Obama will be blamed for everything every democratic politician ever does. Instead of the republicans trying to work with the President-Elect to make for a better US of America, they are still trying to tarnish him so he will not be inaugurated on January 20th. Mr. Obama has proved to date that he is an intelligent, thoughful and respectful man and certainly he was not at the other end of the undercover wiretap phone speaking with the governor. He was busy with his transition team selecting the cabinet members and issues of the economy. The Republicans who think they should rule America forever, will not get over their loss and will continue to do everything in their power to thwart the positive plans that he intends to implement starting January 20th. I am hoping that the newsmedia (at least int he mainstream – I expect the conservative media to act as they usually do) to at least try to report objectively and not try to subvert Mr. Obama. They tried with with the Rev. Wright and Mr. Ayers and lost. All the best Mr. Obama – keep on the straight and narrow. Just remember that they are still trying to prove that you are not elible for the Presidency even though you were born in Hawaii. HA HA! LOL (Laugh out Loud).

    December 10, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  8. robert

    Wonder how much Hillary's getting for her Senate Seat?

    December 10, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  9. richard

    I think the president-elect is sending the right message in saying that the Ill governor should go. The days of " IT'S ABOUT ME" are over. We the people should contiue to send this message out to those who serve in public office..

    December 10, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  10. Howie

    O my gosh, we have Rangle. Jefferson and now Gov Blag. Are the democrats falling apart?????

    December 10, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  11. The Fat Lady Singeth

    @Oh Please! New York's Senate seat is not up for sale. That one's already bought and paid for by the Kennedys. Now you know the real reason HIllary was thrown under the bus and Obama's the elect...Caroline is ready. But they did it so cool-like, and very well, far more intelligently than the blatant Republicans did with Iraq regime change, lol

    Which form of poison is better, folks? Dem poison or Rep. shooting? Either way, you're still toast!

    We need to get rid of both parties.

    December 10, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  12. Earl, Chicago, IL

    Damage Control before day 1.

    December 10, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  13. Indy

    It depends on what the definition of "is" is.

    If an aide talks to Blago, Obama can honestly say that he did not. That's house it works.

    We deserve the government we elect.

    December 10, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  14. Bob

    Yeah, good call Obama. Get him out before he incriminates you. Maybe this will blow over quickly. Typical Illinois politician.

    December 10, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  15. Paula Wesley

    Clean house Obama. You are doing a good job, and you are not even President yet. You never had a chance to get any rest after the election like other Presidents. You have to do your job and Bushes at the same time. That is not fair.

    December 10, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  16. NIck B

    REPUBLICANTS, AFTER 8 YEARS OF THIS, HAVE NO ROOM TO CRITICISE ANYONE, ESPECIALLY WITH PEOPLE LIKE THE "BATHROOM BANDIT," SENATOR CRAIG STILL IN OFFICE.

    December 10, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  17. Bob Smith

    This is all about Bank of America.

    You all are fools to think otherwise.

    The banks control your very thoughts.

    December 10, 2008 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  18. Chris

    Maybe they should send Sarah Palin down from Alaska to drain that Illinois swamp!

    December 10, 2008 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  19. Godluvr

    TO Frank:

    Cry me a river: Rove=Plame. That's more reality than your Bush spin! Please don't respond. But mediocre try.

    December 10, 2008 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  20. Chicago - My Kind of Town

    Ahhh – Blagojevich follows in the foot steps of former Illinois Democrat Govenors Otto Kerner and Dan Walker. Just another Democratic- Thug- Chicago- Politician. It gives me such HOPE!

    December 10, 2008 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  21. Almost the end of THE error!

    I'm so sick of hearing about crooked politicians that think they are above the law. Out with Blago! Out with Larry Craig! Out with Cheney!

    December 10, 2008 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  22. SQUIBBY

    Welcome to modern day "democracy." This happens daily on both sides, only in this case, the seat is for sale BEFORE someone gets into office, not after.

    December 10, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  23. deb0155

    To Mike in Missouri:

    Why are you even bringing up Sarah Palin? Sarah Palin is nothing to the corrupt and filthy politics in the City of Chicago and the State of Illinois. I have lived here 54 years and the politics have always been dirty. The people in the State of Illinois (especially the City of Chicago) know how dirty it is here – so why are all of you outside of Illinois surprised? Quite frankly, all of our politicians from the local, state and executive levels should be put on a train to Siberia. They are all rotten!

    And, by the way, Mike in Missouri – what group of politicians do you think our President-elect comes from? Answer: The corrupt Chicago-based Democratic party!

    December 10, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  24. LS, Austin, Texas

    To EVERYMAN –

    I can see it's going to be a hard adjustment for you to comprehend the fact that there is actually a leader who speaks and does his job the way 'the job' should be done.

    Bush has made a big negative impact on you huh?

    December 10, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  25. Jessica

    They're all idiots! Obama, Blago, Bush – every last one of them!

    December 10, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
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